Community Healthcare Advocate Named in 100 Women of Influence
28 September 2015 at 12:43 pm
The CEO of Regal Home Health and Adjunct Associate Professor at The University of Sydney Nursing School, Anna Shepherd, has won the Business Enterprise category in the 100 Women of Influence Awards for 2015.
For the past 32 years Shepherd has worked as an advocate for primary health nursing in the community. She was recognised for her persistence in keeping community nursing on the national agenda and driving the delivery of high-quality clinical services in the home.
Shepard also helped Regal Home Health become the first private home healthcare organisation in Australia to be accredited by the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards.
“It’s an absolute honour to be included in this list of remarkable women, and it has been an honour to advocate on behalf of community nurses, who make it possible for people to stay in their own homes, connected and happy,” Shepherd said.
She also said it was fitting that the Award announcement was made during Community and Primary Health Nursing Week, from 21 to 27 September, promoted by the Australian College of Nursing.
“I’m thrilled that the timing of this award allows me to highlight the phenomenal work community nurses do for their patients in all weather, every day of the year, around the country,” she said.
“I strongly believe that clinical healthcare in the home is a progressive response to our changing 21st Century health needs, and I’m committed to ensuring that multidisciplinary home healthcare and community nurses continue to have a voice and are recognised for the sustainable quality outcomes achieved within our health system.”
Shepard said she would continue to advocate for community healthcare, focussing on a holistic approach that includes mental health.
“It’s also International Suicide Prevention Month, and I’d particularly like to draw attention to the vital role community healthcare can play in addressing social isolation and supporting people with mental health challenges to live independently and successfully within their own homes,” she said.
“It’s my ambition that this award will help me to continue progressing community-based primary care, which I know has the power to transform people’s lives and offer much needed holistic support to diverse communities.”
Shepherd’s mother, Patricia R Shepherd RMN, FACN, established Regal Home Health in the 1960s, which developed an innovative nurse-led model of care that allows nurses to take control of their practice. Shepherd joined the organisation in 1984 and took on the role of CEO in 2000.
Shepherd was the only Australian woman to graduate from Harvard Business School’s Entrepreneur Owner/President Management Program in 2010 and she now participates in the Harvard Alumni Mentor Program. She is also an active participant in the Commonwealth Bank’s Women in Focus initiative.
The 100 Women of Influence Awards were established by the Australian Financial Review and Westpac.